Mind of Mario

Wilds Cover

I was projecting myself on to Mario (borrowing his better life), becoming the hero as I fought through waves of strange enemies, some of which are literally named Bullies. That made it incredibly easy to project my real life tormentors onto these aggressive 64-bit baddies. But sometimes the days were a bit darker, especially when I had been hit, and I murdered needlessly with punches, kicks, and bouncing off of their heads. It felt better to have the power and be the bully for once. Continue Reading

For All the Broken Vessels

Compassion in the Final Moments of Hollow Knight

Russin Cover

At times it can seem as if the world of videogames, just like the raucous meatspace around us, is first and foremost designed with the loudest and fiercest of stories in mind. All too often, and with relative ease, they appear to drown out the quieter moments for which this unique art form can allow; and taken at face value, the somewhat elusive genre of Metroidvanias seems by definition to fit right into this very mold. After all, its guiding principle is growth—be it in the form of deeper understanding, improved skills, or (of course) greater power. Continue Reading

Not a Mimic

Deception as a Rhetorical Device in Survival Horror Games

Webb Cover Image (Talos I)

Samantha Webb holds a Master’s degree in Game Design from Brunel University, London. She is a freelance games writer and narrative designer, working with both AAA and indie studios to develop games. She has an interest in second-level storytelling and… Continue Reading